back to article Nominet ignores advice, rejects serious change despite losing CEO, chair, half its board in membership vote

Nominet has rejected calls for serious change at the .uk registry operator despite losing its CEO, chairman, and three board members to a membership vote earlier this month. Members were expecting the board to announce the appointment of two caretaker directors to take over as chair and vice-chair after the stunning upset, …

  1. tel2016

    Is this an April Fool?

    I sincerely hope so. Otherwise, time for the Nominet members that want change to contact their MPs, as I previously suggested here:

    https://forums.theregister.com/forum/all/2021/03/18/nominet_voting_fears/

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Is this an April Fool?

      I was wondering what the Articles of Association have to say and whether they can be used against the board in litigation?

      1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

        Re: Is this an April Fool?

        The AoA oblige the board to appoint two executives, which is the main complaint...

    2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

      Re: Is this an April Fool?

      It's from Kieren McCarthy who did the other related articles - so far ok. Given that he is in San Francisco, why publish it on Thu 1 Apr 2021 at 06:09 UTC when he would (probably) be deep in slumber?

      1. MarkTriumphant

        Re: Is this an April Fool?

        Given that thy are 8 hours behind BST, and so 7 hours behind UTC, that is still before midnight. Seems like the perfect time to post. Mind you, years of Reddit may have corrupted my time-awareness.

        1. chuBb. Silver badge

          Re: Is this an April Fool?

          And the fact the article links to the press release/letter hosted by nominet, so that would be quite the trick to pull off as i doubt el reg is any more popular with nominet's board as they are with apple....

      2. diodesign (Written by Reg staff) Silver badge

        Article publication times

        You might be interested to know that our wonderful home-made publishing system lets you schedule when articles go live. Pieces can be written on one day, edited, and queued up to appear any time after.

        We use this for various reasons, and the reason here is that Kieren is on the US West Coast and the article is ideal for a UK audience. So for things like this, which isn't breaking news and more analytical, we time it to appear as Britain wakes up and checks its phones and laptops for news.

        The homepage is mostly a flow of articles, and people mostly come to us via the homepage. If stuff's published overnight, it can be missed by readers as by the time they glance at the page, the headline is way down under many others. Not a lot of people look beyond the first few rows.

        We're coming up with an iteration of the homepage in which important articles aren't lost in the flow, but also that people who want a flow of articles can get a flow of articles.

        C.

    3. don't you hate it when you lose your account Silver badge

      Re: Is this an April Fool?

      Banana Republic. I don't know what else to say.

      1. TimMaher Silver badge
        Coat

        Banana Republic

        They are the first two letters of “Brexit”.

        1. paul-s

          Re: Banana Republic

          Maybe the complete backronym could be Banana Republic Ensues Xenophobic Idiots’ Tantrum?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Is this an April Fool?

      No, it's all true, the only fools are the people in charge of Nominet.

    5. Scott 53

      Re: Is this an April Fool?

      No, April Fools are meant to be funny.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Is this an April Fool?

        > No, April Fools are meant to be funny.

        So no announcement of appointing Richard Stallman as Chairman then?

  2. trevorde Silver badge

    Strategy 101

    “The exercise will include quantitative and qualitative research, which we expect will take 6-10 weeks. We will make the findings public.”

    "Unless we don't agree with them."

    Never announce an investigation unless you already know the result.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Strategy 101

      Never announce an investigation unless you already know can fix the result.

  3. sbt Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Pointless empires built on clouds

    It is absurd that what should be a simple administrative function, i.e. approving the list of organisations that may register domains in a TLD and the eligibility requirements, should consume so much effort and attention.

    It should have been enough to set up the process 20 years ago and just run it. It could have been done by a committee of 2 or 3 people. Not all this organisational overhead and stupid drama.

    1. Red Ted
      FAIL

      Re: Pointless empires built on clouds

      It’s a nice idea, but you fail to account for the fact that someone would spot the opportunity to make money from a captive market.

      1. sbt Silver badge
        WTF?

        Re: a captive market

        I don't get it; there's nothing about an 'industry' or 'member' run body that protects the public from market failure, either. The globe is littered with these non-government TLD adminstrations from the US to New Zealand that are captured or dominated by special interests.

        There's nothing special about Internet domain name registrars that says they can't be regulated by a small government department, for example. It would be like saying the road rules must be in the charge of a consortium of car manufacturers; that government couldn't be trusted? At least (democratic) governments are accountable to the wider public via the ballot box.

        1. iron Silver badge

          Re: a captive market

          The problem is if you put a gov dept in charge of domain names it will end up being run by Baroness Dildo, Jeremy Cumbucket or another of the many brainless freaks that are chums with politicians.

          1. Yes Me Silver badge
            WTF?

            Re: a captive market

            Correct. It needs to be set up with governance rules that prevent capture and prevent profit, and that cannot be amended. Why Nominet was not done like that is above my pay grade to explain.

        2. CountCadaver

          Re: a captive market

          Ballot Box?

          Thats a laugh for sure, no what the civil service ALWAYS wins. Look at the sheer number of policies that continue across (allegedly) diametrically opposed administrations...

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: a captive market

            "Look at the sheer number of policies that continue across (allegedly) diametrically opposed administrations..."

            No plan survives first contact with reality.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Pointless empires built on clouds

      "It is absurd that what should be a simple administrative function, i.e. approving the list of organisations that may register domains in a TLD and the eligibility requirements, should consume so much effort and attention."

      When you get to manage as many names as Nominet's registry, that simple administrative function isn't so simple any more. It's far beyond the capabilities of a committee of 2 or 3 people.

      The number of people on Nominet's board and management isn't really the problem. It's what those people did and failed to do.

      1. sbt Silver badge
        Alert

        Re: When you get to manage as many names as Nominet's registry

        Managing the names is what the registrars do, not Nominet. The number of names doesn't scale the effort for Nominet, the actual work required to perform the core role is minimal; a name is a few rows in the database and maybe around kilobyte of storage.

        Why else do you think they were trying to come up with other ventures to spunk the cash on and justify their existence? It's an absolute gravy train. Instead, the Nominet portion of the fee should be 10p and any surplus should be given to a proper charity like WWF or something.

        1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

          Re: When you get to manage as many names as Nominet's registry

          "The number of names doesn't scale the effort for Nominet, the actual work required to perform the core role is minimal..." (@sbt)

          This ^^. The board sets the rules for others to follow. The number of "others" doesn't matter. Occasionally, new rules might be needed, hopefully proactively, to deal with new situations. This isn't hard work.

          NB: I have this regularly at work - "Oh, no! We've got more students! Now I need to change all my materials!!!" Me: "Why? It doesn't matter whether you are lecturing/providing tutorials to 50 or 500. The only thing you need to do is make sure you have the ability to mark the extra papers in the time allowed, so find a good PhD student."

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: When you get to manage as many names as Nominet's registry

          You seem unaware of what a registry does. It manages a register of domain names: who registered which names, when the names expire, which DNS servers they use, what DNS data goes into the TLD, what info is published in whois, etc. Management of domain names is done by registries and registrars.

          .uk has around 10 million names. If you can fit that and the related metadata into "maybe around kilobyte of storage", please enlighten us.

          1. sbt Silver badge
            Headmaster

            Re: "maybe around kilobyte of storage"

            My estimate was per name. I wrote:

            a name is a few rows in the database and maybe around kilobyte of storage

            So a DB (or DBs) totalling ~10GB if both our estimates are in the ballpark.

            Again, it's the registrars that deal with registrants over expiry, whois data, etc. They just push updates to the registry. The registry itself doesn't need a lot of staff to manage this DB since it doesn't deal need to deal with registrants directly for the most part; updates can be submitted via APIs. The registry doesn't need to run call centres, or provide a Web admin console for DNS or whois, etc. for registrants. Some registries handle escalated eligibility disputes, sure.

            However, any such work has no policy-making implications; you can just employ staff that follow processes laid down 20 years ago to do it. Or out-source the technical stuff.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: "maybe around kilobyte of storage"

              Yes, registrars deal with registrants. Registries deal with registars (mostly). Which means they manage the registration life-cycle - add/renew/delete/update/transfer - in accordance with the registry's policies. That's domain name management too - it's just different management from the stuff you explained that registrars generally handle. Although registry stuff may well be automated, it does need human intervention and oversight.

              Registries have to provide customer and technical support to registrars. And deal with these requests from registants too. While I was waiting in the foyer of one registry, the receptionist was fielding calls from registrants wanting the registry's help to configure BIND or debug why email for their new domain name wasn't working. Those questions should have gone to the registrar of course. But they didn't.

              Registry policies are not fixed. They have to change from time to time because the domain name business changes - the impact of GDPR or the introduction of DNSSEC for example. Whatever policies that were in place at Nominet (or some other registry) 20 years ago will be different today. IIRC Nominet's registrars relied on email and a shell script to register domain names ~20 years ago. Nowadays they mostly use EPP. This means registry policy can't be a "fire and forget" thing. That requires policy-making machinery and people to run it.

              Oh and outsourcing the technical operations also requires staff. Somebody needs to write and negotiate the contracts, verify the contract terrns are being met, make sense of the reports the outsource provider generates, issue RFPs every year or two, etc, etc.

              1. YetAnotherLocksmith

                Re: "maybe around kilobyte of storage"

                And that receptionist simply said, to every caller who was confused, "Sorry [Sir/Madam], you'll need to take that up with the people you are actually paying money to for your domain hosting, email and server hosting." You can parallel that up fairly well, fairly easily.

                There's no need for much of the cruft of Nominet, and they are clearly not fit for purpose.

              2. sbt Silver badge
                Meh

                Re: "They have to change from time to time because the domain name business changes"

                That's mostly driven by registries trying to think up new ways to make money. If they'd have just focused on necessary security and legal changes, a small committee meeting every few months could have kept up. As long as they didn't keep kicking the can down the road like ICANN with GDPR.

                Anyway, a lot of these changes are in no way unique to a particular TLD or ccTLD; DNSSEC is more like work for the IETF. Individual registries ought to be leveraging the collective approaches from other registries rather than re-inventing the wheel. Registry operations/technical platform would be well suited to a white-boxing approach given the fairly universal registry operations modelled by ICANN. DNSSEC still lacks critical mass.

                It's not like there's been any real revolution in the provision of name services; the suite of record types is largely unchanged; spoofing is still an issue. But solving the problems with DNS isn't really the role of the registries anyway. They've got a small remit in the grand scheme of the Internet. DNS has been declining in importance ever since the dawn of the search engine and Web browser bookmarks and people no longer need to remember domain names or type them in. Also not helped by the concentration of Web to a few well known sites like FB, Twitter, Google, etc. And the attempted proliferation of new TLDs by ICANN but with massive costs attached just to make them richer.

                If registries were actually dealing with the hard problems of identity, authorisation and authentication on the Internet, I'd have more sympathy, but they're not; most don't have any kind of real person or organisation requirements for registrants. Have you got a credit card? Great, here's a domain.

                If you're still not convinced, just look at Nominet's focus on things other than DNS; it's clear from their own conduct they had more financial and other resources than they needed to operate a TLD registry. QE fucking D.

                1. This post has been deleted by its author

                2. R Soul

                  Re: "They have to change from time to time because the domain name business changes"

                  DNS has been declining in importance ever since the dawn of the search engine and Web browser bookmarks and people no longer need to remember domain names or type them in.

                  You're right to say end users don't give a shit about DNS. They never did. And nowadays they don''t see domain names any more. They don't need to know or care about that, just like few of us need to know or care how our homes are supplied with water, electricity and so on.

                  The trade in domain names is declining in importance. That's not true for DNS. It's still there in the background making every tweet, web visit, email, VoIP call, cat video, etc possible. Try switching it off on your network and see how far you get.

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: "They have to change from time to time because the domain name business changes"

                    @"Try switching it off on your network and see how far you get."

                    The automation provided with DNS was sufficently handy to remove the historical need for maintaining local hosts files but if DNS no longer works for the common benefit then every OS still supports host file resolution. a quick IP based FTP to get a copy of latest hosts file and the user is set, so no, in reality the web can live without DNS the registratars are the ones that cannot live without the internet users.

                    When you look at the problems with the internet and how many of these internet abuses use dns against webusers then do you really want to continue funding the system

                    Those that wish to publish need some way for users to find their site, at the moment DNS registration is enough but it comes with an unreasonable price for everyone else.

                    If enough people stopped using DNS for resolution then publishers will cooperate with whatever resolution service replaces it because being known is their bread and butter and it must be said they have a history getting into bed with just about anyone

                3. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: "They have to change from time to time because the domain name business changes"

                  "DNSSEC is more like work for the IETF"

                  Adoption of DNSSEC means changes to TLD registry policies - getting the child's KSK to the registry, how/if the registry checks that KSK, which algorithms are supported, etc. Then there's the DNSSEC policy for the TLD itself - key lengths, signature duration, KSK and ZSK rollovers, etc, None of these things are static. They change because the risks and threats change, the IETF invents new stuff, new crypto comes along and so forth. Which means registry policies sometimes need to change too.

  4. Neil Barnes Silver badge
    Alien

    Remind me again

    On which planet do these Nominet board members live?

    1. Julz Silver badge

      Re: Remind me again

      Planet gravy train. Very popular with these types.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Remind me again

      Their, collective, action shows that they have something to hid, potentially fraud...

      So it would seem they all live on planet "self-preservation at any cost".

      There are only two options: first, if there is any evidence, to engage the fraud squad, second call a second EGM to nuke the board.

      1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

        Re: Remind me again

        This is, I'm afraid, the very obvious conclusion to draw. These people have a great deal to hide.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Remind me again

      Uranus?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Remind me again

      @"On which planet do these Nominet board members live?"

      The same corrupt one that you live on put the thieves into power.

      Whilst corruption continues to be rewarded without any sign of punishment then those that have no shame will do what they like against you.

      Either every election is fixed or you guys keep voting to be abused

    5. A.P. Veening Silver badge

      Re: Remind me again

      On which planet do these Nominet board members live?

      Does it really matter? If they keep this up, they might find themselves unable to continue (living that is).

  5. jonathan keith

    Well played.

    You had me going there for a moment, I admit... although come to think of it, I wouldn't put anything past the rump of the Nominet board. This is an April Fool, right? Right?

  6. seven of five Silver badge

    Hand me the crisps and beer please.

    Oh, this is going to be good.

    1. tel2016
      Pint

      Re: Hand me the crisps and beer please.

      Would you like popcorn with that?

  7. Stanislav Bonita

    Ha!

    You almost got me then I saw the date.

  8. Recluse

    Drain the swamp ...

    As my eyes descended through Kieren's latest update the more my eyebrows rose ... shortly thereafter my jaw joined in and descended, ultimately hitting the floor when I reached the bit about Eleanor Bradley (recently been removed from the board) now being appointed as interim CEO. Talk about waving two fingers at the membership!

    I wonder if this might act as a catalyst for EGM number 2 (similar to the way the shutdown of the Nominet forum during the AGM seemed to have been the final straw last time)

    Of course where money is involved those currently in control are unlikely to depart voluntarily ... I fear this may be a long slog to drain the swamp, let us hope Public Benefit are up for a further fight

    1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

      Re: Drain the swamp ...

      I'm afraid the article rather over-eggs the pudding since the actual letter explains that most of what is complained about is mandatory.

  9. Natalie Gritpants Jr Silver badge

    Put your money where your mouth is

    If you have a .uk address move it somewhere else.

    1. katrinab Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: Put your money where your mouth is

      I have 8 .uk addresses, but I don't really have much of a choice. If I want my emails and web traffic to reach me, changing them to .ie or .scot isn't going to work.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Put your money where your mouth is

      No, look at how your registrar voted and then move to a different registrar if need be.

      1. doublelayer Silver badge

        Re: Put your money where your mouth is

        Yes. Everybody reading this who owns .uk domains should do this. It's likely another vote is coming and anything we can do to increase the power of those registrars supporting it is going to help. Nominet has already had experience losing one vote and really doesn't want to repeat it, so they're likely to bring out as many methods as they can next time. In fact, if you don't have .uk domains, still move them to someone who supported this vote because they're likely to be better serving your interests if the domains you hold have a similar experience. All my domains are with a supporter. If you would like to see a list of options, consult the publicbenefit.uk home page.

      2. excession

        Re: Put your money where your mouth is

        How do I find out how my registrar voted?

        (It’s Tsohost aka Paragon)

        And if they voted against, anyone got any favourite providers for a very small business website?

        1. Microchip

          Re: Put your money where your mouth is

          According to the the public benefit website, Tsohost are in the GoDaddy fold, who voted against it. There's a lookup tool on there where you can check.

          I've had good experience with Namecheap myself, though a friend said they've a rep for hosting spam domains. I figure any sufficiently large registrar probably has issues with that one. *shrug*

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: Put your money where your mouth is

            A number of people here recommend Mythic Beasts*. They seem fine to me but I only have a couple of domains so be guided by those who have more.

            * After I'd signed up it turned out that I'd the guys responsible through another forum - which I counted as being in their favour.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Put your money where your mouth is

          I was also with tsohost and asked the same question after the last article - moved to Gandi.net last week. It seems very nice, the DNS control pane is a massive improvement too.

          Virtually every scam I've seen has involved a domain purchased via namecheap. I realise as a registrar they're a long way back in the queue of people to hold responsible, but wouldn't touch them myself.

  10. Big_Boomer Silver badge
    Mushroom

    April Fool?

    If it isn't then it's time to invoke the Ripley Protocol.

    1. Blofeld's Cat Silver badge

      Re: April Fool?

      Absolutely, it's the only way to be sure.

      With some of the current board members, it might be a sensible precaution anyway

    2. TimMaher Silver badge
      Alien

      Re: Ripley Protocol

      Bags I the exoskeleton power suit with the flame thrower arm.

      Icon because...

  11. Siusaidh

    A profound vacuum of trusted leadership, and the same rogue regime re-grouping

    So we basically have the same regime as 2 weeks ago, just Russell (CEO) and Mark (Chair) not there.

    I completely disagree with the delay (or ultimate obstruction) over appointing Sir Michael as Chairman and Axel as director, which were integral parts of the Public Benefit campaign, which virtually 500 members signed up for.

    But to be quite clear, the personnel now on the Board (and the new interim CEO) are the personnel who had been waving through the policies of Mark and Russell - without any public contradictions - and this regime and its policies have just been massively called out at the EGM, with a huge loss of Trust and Confidence.

    Does Rob’s statement today engender trust, confidence, that this isn’t just the previous regime regrouping and playing for time?

    On the flip side, they are gambling that a 2nd EGM won’t be called, because the win at the 1st one was too borderline.

    That is the factor Simon Blackler will face as well of course.

    In principle, I’d like to see the entire Board dismissed by the members, at which point, members have power and a company obligation to appoint at least one director to keep the company legal. That’s the nuclear option.

    However, a second passed resolution of that kind would not be certain.

    I personally feel sad that Rob (acting Chair) and the Board have missed an opportunity here - a common-sense opportunity - to appoint Sir Michael as quickly as they have appointed Ellie Bradley (Board evictee and interim CEO), to demonstrate a willingness to walk the walk of change, and not just talk the talk. That would have engendered trust that they were sincere in their ‘Road to Damascus’ conversion. It was possible to do.

    As before, they seem to be listening only to the bits they want to hear. The first change hundreds of members called for was the replacement of Mark with Sir Michael. Instead, we have a vacuum of trust and a vacuum of trusted leadership.

    Instead, the effect will be continuing loss of trust and confidence. This could lead to further instability for the company. Implicit in today’s announcement seems to me to be the desire to block Sir Michael’s appointment and the level of radical change last week’s EGM was called for.

    Sure two fall guys in particular have gone - Russell and Mark - but today we were very much witnessing the same regime re-building itself. I have no trust in this Board’s intended direction. I will speak, and have spoken, to individuals on the Board and members of staff. But as things stand, unless individuals speak out (which they still may do) they will be tarnished with the same opprobrium lavished on Mark and Russell. From their reportedly ‘unanimous’ collaboration in the demonisation of the Public Benefit initiative, they never wanted the proposed changes and were vehemently opposed to what Public Benefit was requesting: Change of leadership right at the top. And everything that would follow from that. This 'remnant' Board rubber-stamped the policies Mark and Russell were kicked out for. None of them have earned trust. All of them have been a part of a regime that was gralloched last week.

    To re-shape a quote by (I think) David Cameron: “they are all in this together”.

  12. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    I'd expect another EGM with a motion of no confidence in the board. If such a motion passes then either the board has to resign as a whole or Companies House get brought in. It seems the only option left to Public Benefit other then giving up.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "or Companies House get brought in"

      Why do you keep banging on about Companies House?

      You've been told many times that (a) they're not a regulator; (b) they have no enforcement powers; (c) they do not intervene in boardroom disputes and can't do that even if they wanted to; (d) their mission is to operate a registry of company info - a job they do badly.

      How about you take your complaints about Nominet's board to Companies House and let us know how you get on?

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        It's very simple. Companies House are the regulator for listed companies. Nominet, like any other company has to follow the Companies Act.

        Like most people here I don't have any standing to take this sort* of complaint about Nominet to them, the members do. They'll have to exhaust other options first.

        * I have, in the past, set them onto a business sticking "Ltd" after its name when it wasn't. The business had brought it on themselves by keeping sending me spam.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Companies House are the regulator for listed companies."

          No they're not. Companies House don't regulate anything - except in your imagination.

          Companies House is not a regulator. Read this:

          https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/companies-house/about

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Here's another interesting link for you:

            https://www.gov.uk/search-the-register-of-disqualified-company-directors

            Just check on who maintains it.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              You still don't get it. Of course Companies House maintains the register of disqualified directors. That's part of their remit of publishing info about UK companies. It doesn't make them a regulator.

              The courts decide who gets disqualified, not Companies House. They just update their database whenever a court tells them to do that.

        2. General Purpose Bronze badge

          "Companies House are the regulator for listed companies."

          Who told you that? Not legislation or government statements or academic research. Was it in a newspaper article somewhere - the Daily Spurt maybe? Do you think you saw it on Wikipedia once?

          It's a registrar. It's not a regulator.The difference matters.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Like most people here I don't have any standing to take this sort of complaint about Nominet to them"

          Bullshit!

          Any member of the public can report any crime or make a complaint to the appropriate authorities. Which in this case is NOT Companies House.

          Just think about what you said. If you saw somebody nicking tat from Asda, would you say and do nothing because you're not an Asda shareholder?

    2. General Purpose Bronze badge

      "or Companies House get brought in."

      That's an empty threat which would only convince the Nominet board that their critics are ignorant and incompetent. It's bad enough that you might mislead people into thinking it's realistic, but you just did something even worse. You called it "the only option other then giving up".

      Whose side are you on?

  13. Coastal cutie

    Second EGM just galloping over the horizon.......

    1. cipnt

      Indeed. Discussions are well underway

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Leads to an interesting question. Is this actually quite a cunning move? Is it possible to craft an EGM resolution to remove a CEO who's not actually on the board? I don't know the articles of association, so have no idea what is possible, and what's not.

  14. Lucien Taylor

    Not another consultation?

    1. The Garratt Report was fiddled and board members are still setting their salaries without members’ consent (because first draft was subject to requested editorial amendments by the board)

    2. The Lyons Report was ignored.

    3. The .uk consultation was ignored

    What is the reason behind these failures? Same people in charge - CEO Bradley has been in power for 25 years, and now Godaddy (its biggest customer) closely behind pulling strings.

    Enough!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not another consultation?

      Dear Member “the only way to do so is for us to be as open and candid as we can” quote Rob Binns.

      In this new climate of openness a good start would be to revealing Russell Haworth’s and Mark Wood’s payoff packages. Also, all the directors remuneration packages and bonus structures.

      In fact, opening up the books regarding all the money poured down the drain for failed projects for which the Board members were paid bonuses would be an even better start.

  15. hedge

    Should we take the ball away from Nominet?

    Nominet is blazenly misappropriating the cookie jar.

    Is it time to move the .uk register to the care of oftel?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Should we take the ball away from Nominet?

      Oftel? Perhaps you meant Ofcom.

      No matter. Putting .uk in government hands (or Ofcom's) would be an epic, epic fail. Just think what would happen: outsourcing to Crapita, Dildo Harding as registry CEO, Boris's cronies on the board, 10K+/day consulting contracts for Deloitte, etc, etc. At best .uk would end up being run by people who were even more out of touch and had their snouts buried much deeper in the trough.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Should we take the ball away from Nominet?

        Yup, taking it out the hands of the amateurs and bringing in the professionals.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

  16. Dabooka Silver badge
    WTF?

    This does not often happen...

    ...but I am lost for words.

    Actually I have one, unfuckingbelievable.

  17. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Only one choice

    See icon :(

  18. hairydog

    I would like to know who appointed Nominet to be in charge of the UK domain registration. If it was some sort of official body, perhaps they should be pressed to reconsider.

    If no-one specifically appointed them, is it now time for Ofcom to look into whether this vital national resource should remain in the hands of such a corrupt, self-serving organisation?

    1. R Soul

      We - the UK Internet community - put Nominet in charge of .uk. Nobody else was involved in that decision.

      Handing over .uk to some other organisation is an option. But be careful what you wish for. Nominet's core registry operations are rock-solid. They've not been affected in any way by the current or previous boardroom fights. That could be put at risk if they have to be moved elsewhere. And who's to say if new owners would be less greedy, more accountable, more transparent, etc than a reformed Nominet that was responsive to its members?

      Ofcom has no powers to intervene. UK does not regulate the Internet - apart from trying to stop kids frorm accessing porn sites.

      1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

        Ofcom has no powers to intervene. UK does not regulate the Internet - apart from trying to stop kids frorm accessing porn sites.

        It does, and government has been increasing the amount of regulation over the years. Generally Ofcom's interventions are when there's market abuse, failure, or disputes. I think functionally (and in a regulatory sense), Nominet's the equivalent of Ofcom administering the telephone number space*. So I think it could intervene, especially if there's a perceived risk of instability in the .uk namespace, as that's arguably critical national infrastructure.

        But there'd be a bunch of legalese to figure out the practical and legal limits to intervention. Instructing on operational stuff is something it does already, eg issuing decision notices instructing operators to play nicely with others. Instructing Nominet to change it's board or articles, or even a decision to nationalise Nominet would get a lot more complex.

        *Something Axel probably knows a lot about, ie previous suggestions that countries should administer 'national' resources like UK IP addresses. Which would have been nice from a routing/traffic management perspective, but a huge bag of worms. Hence why such stuff has been left to the RIRs, despite the occasional government desire to 'manage' stuff.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          So I think it could intervene, especially if there's a perceived risk of instability in the .uk namespace, as that's arguably critical national infrastructure.

          Ofcom has no authority to intervene. Those powers belong to the Secretary of State at what is currently DCMS. Read clauses 19-21 of the 2010 Digital Economy Act.

          I think those powers would only get exercised for something *really* bad - for instance if Nominet was about to go bust or DNS for .uk had a serious outage.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Is that the same Ofcom who allowed Putin and Iran to get UK TV channels? The Ofcom that lets BT/Openretch fuck us over on broadband pricing and FTTP? The Ofcom that's done nothing to stop SMS spam and autodialler spambots? Or is it some other Ofcom?

  19. heyrick Silver badge

    Are we honestly surprised?

    The gravy train must be preserved at all costs.

    Fire the whole fucking lot of them and return Nominet to what it was supposed to be.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "effectively dares members to fire the rest of them"

    Challenge accepted.

    As for what to do with "excess revenue", how about just not charge as much? After all, it's supposed to be a non-profit, so why the big profit?

  21. Howard Sway

    “Those that fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it”

    They learnt from history all right : that as soon as their arses descended into the executive chair they would be able to repeat it and grab the big moolah themselves.

  22. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Mushroom

    “as open and candid as we can,”

    You've already shown how open and candid you can be : not at all. You are all a bunch of lying, thieving parasites and the only way things will go right is when you gotten rid of.

    Crack ou a can of RAID, there's an infestation to be taken care of.

  23. Potemkine! Silver badge

    Call me cynical, but...

    acting chair Rob Binns made reconciliatory remarks and promised to take their concerns seriously.

    Did anyone older than 7 year old took that PR BS seriously?

    When somebody tells you that, you know he or she doesn't give a fuck about your opinion

  24. nd-ukis

    So Eleanor Bradley, one of the board members to be fired by the members becomes CEO. Remember she promoted the idea of a £20 reg fee for the proposed .uk domain (see BBC link below) and told the BBC it was "not a money making exercise". Of course not!! - thankfully the members stood against that idea but the extension was still rolled out, and the board members pay and bonuses rocketed since that time.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19767014

  25. Franco Silver badge

    Anyone who didn't see this coming? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

    Not that being booted out for incompetence has ever really hindered the career of people with enough connections on the old boy network, but given Nominet's intransigence on the EGM procedures and votes it was always likely they were going to do whatever they wanted until they are forced out.

  26. AxelPawlik

    Indeed. The RIPE NCC's membership is spread over 74 countries, very diverse, and perhaps a little easier to keep at an arm's length overall. Nominet is subject to UK laws, and just one government. It is essential to keep those stakeholders "reasonably happy", while being accountable directly to its membership. I believe very strongly in bottom-up industry self-regulation.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "while being accountable directly to its membership"

      This seems to be an aspect that's escaped its attention.

  27. R Soul

    " issuing decision notices instructing operators to play nicely with others"

    Ofcom can do that to telcos, not to ISPs or CDNs. Imagine how bad it would be if Ofcom decided BGP policy.

  28. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Joke

    Eleanor Bradley

    Ah, look at all the lovely people!

    Ah, look at all the lovely people!

    Eleanor Bradley

    Picks up her seat on the board where a vote has been

    Lives in a dream

    Waits at the window

    Wearing the face that she keeps in a jar by the door

    Who is it for?

    All the lovely people

    Where do they all come from?

    All the lovely people

    Where do they all belong?

    With thanks to Paul McCartney for the inspiration.

    1. Lunatic Looking For Asylum

      Re: Eleanor Bradley

      > Where do they all belong?

      At the trough with their ilk.

  29. bartsmit
    Joke

    Handforth has been bested

    Read the standing orders! Read them, and understand them!

    Where is Jackie?

  30. RErnes

    What would the FCA say about this?

    Having just completed my yearly compulsory anti-fraud training, I can say with confidence that this this is fraud 101 behaviour.

    Smells like the board might be covering something, and they are in that together. Do they use Ernst & Young as their accountants? I've heard they are good at cooking books.

  31. -martin-

    Other case where trying to run 'a service' as a for-profit business... It's all about the money, not the service... Everyone loses.

  32. This post has been deleted by its author

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